For individual reasons, old structures hold a fascination to many; their materials were often formed using techniques that are now almost forgotten, yet these techniques resulted from generations of successful experience.
There has been a tremendous resurgence in the use of traditional materials and many training courses have been set up to reintroduce lost skills, particularly in the use of limes in restoration work.
As a precursor of the selection of repair materials, identification of the original material’s composition is undertaken using chemical, petrographic and visual techniques.
Sandberg has wide experience in this field, having worked with English Heritage, the National Trust and other bodies over many years.
Other activities include differentiating between wrought and cast irons, appraisal of old, often decaying structures and stone matching and selection for repairs or sympathetic reconstructions.
Individual cases have included the statue of Eros (badly cracked supporting leg), the Albert Memorial, the SS Great Britain, numerous prestigious mansions, Windsor Castle (radar survey to locate concealed voids in firewalls), the Forth Rail Bridge (materials evaluation and provision of a new paint specification) and many other old bridges.
Industrial pollution and maintenance difficulties resulted in the urgent need for renovation of the Palm House at Kew Gardens. We supervised the repair or replacement of cast iron members such as pilasters and trusses, the repair or replacement of all dome glazing frames and the refurbishment of the oak sash windows within the dome. Other works included complete re-glazing, improvements to the drainage system, a new external access system to the dome and removal and replacement of the original paint system.
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